On 8 May, the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement celebrate the dedication, compassion, courage, and impact of millions of volunteers and countless others who offer help, care, and life-saving services to people in their communities. Many people around the world celebrate World Red Cross Day to commemorate the birthday of Henry Dunant who was the reason behind the establishment of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement, which today is the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) and National Societies (NS) in 1863 in Geneva, Switzerland.
The theme for this year’s celebration was ‘Be Human Kind.’
Speaking at the ceremony, Jato Sillah, president for The Gambia Red Cross Society remained of the motive behind celebrating the day, which he said, is not only about growing the dignity of an individual Henry Dunant, but also about protecting the lives of people from disasters and emergency situations.
He thanked GRCS volunteers across the country for their selfless services to humanity, saying their work has touched the hearts and changed the lives of many vulnerable people.
He therefore appealed to Gambians to open up their hearts and homes to those in need during emergencies.
Alasan Senghore, secretary general for The Gambia Red Cross Society, noted that the world is tough and scary right now as the past months and years have been marked by multiple crises that have spared no one and have hit the most vulnerable people the hardest—from COVID-19 to the climate crisis, humanitarian emergencies, and escalating conflicts.
However, he said stated that despite these, there is so much hope for humanity to be found in the form of acts of kindness.
Senghore reminded that acts of kindness are all around us and no matter how big or small, they make a huge difference in people's lives.
He also pointed out that, they believe that acts of kindness have the power to spark a ripple effect, to multiply, to spread across communities, countries, and the whole world.
“We pay tribute to all those individuals who selflessly help others in need. When all these small local actions multiply, the impact can be enormous.”
The impact of kindness, he added, is appreciated more than anything, while thanking GRCS volunteers for their selfless services to humanity, their donors, Government, his staff, media and everyone that has supported and worked with them in alleviating human suffering.
The Gambia Red Cross Society is the organisation that walks to what is called ‘the last mile’ to reach the most vulnerable and hard to reach people.
It works around the clock to provide life-saving food and non-food relief, health services and emergency evacuations, shelter, care for displaced population, climate change, water, sanitation and hygiene, reuniting missing families, providing humanitarian assistance to migrants, livelihood, food security, First Aid Services, addressing gender issues, among others.